Governor Cuomo launches smart street lighting program for New York State


Over half a million streetlights across New York State will be converted to LED technology by 2025 as part of an energy saving initiative that is expected to save taxpayers US$87m annually, supporting the state’s ambition to reduce emissions by 40% by 2030.

Governor Andrew M Cuomo has launched Smart Street Lighting NY, a new program that calls for at least 500,000 streetlights throughout the state to be replaced with energy-saving LED technology by 2025.

The program has the potential to reduce statewide energy consumption by 482GWh annually. This is the equivalent of nearly 45,000 households, saving taxpayers US$87m a year, and will drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve the quality of light, and increase the safety of road users across the state. The program directly supports Governor Cuomo’s goal of reducing climate emissions 40% by 2030, based on 1990 levels.

The New York Power Authority (NYPA) will lead the interdisciplinary and interagency initiative with the Department of Public Service, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), the Department of Environmental Conservation and other state agencies to offer a one-stop shop solution for municipalities to replace inefficient streetlights with the cleaner, more efficient LED technology, and provide technical expertise on design, procurement and construction.

NYPA’s government customers are provided a wide-array of lighting options to help meet their individual needs, including specifications on the lights to incorporate smart city technology, which can be used for multiple other functions, such as cameras and other safety features, traffic and parking sensors, weather monitoring equipment, wi-fi, and energy meters.

NYPA will work with cities, towns, villages and counties throughout New York State to fully manage and implement a customer’s transition to LED streetlight technology. The Power Authority will provide upfront financing for the project, with payments made to NYPA in the years following the cost-savings created by the reduced energy use of the LED streetlights. NYPA is also willing to finance the purchase of street lighting systems from a municipality’s utility if needed. The Smart Street Lighting NY program is the latest scheme in Cuomo’s BuildSmart NY initiative, and builds upon NYPA’s commitment in June 2017 to develop US$300m annually in energy efficiency and renewable measures at public facilities by 2019.

“This modernization program will help save taxpayer money, increase energy efficiency, and increase public safety through increased visibility,” explained Cuomo. “It’s a win-win-win that complements this administration’s efforts to fight climate change and create a cleaner, greener New York for all.”

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Tom has edited Traffic Technology International (TTi) magazine and its Traffic Technology Today website since May 2014. During his time at the title, he has interviewed some of the top transportation chiefs at public agencies around the world as well as CEOs of leading multinationals and ground-breaking start-ups. Tom's earlier career saw him working on some the UK's leading consumer magazine titles. He has a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).